October 11th–Philip the Deacon
I wanted to mention that today we celebrate the feast day of one of the first deacons, the deacon Philip. The office of the deacon was the first auxiliary office in the church. It was established by the apostles in the very early days of the church. Deacons are the helpers of the church; their job is to be assistants to the priests, ministers, and pastors. As well as being assistants to the ministers, the deacons serve the congregations.
In the early days of the church, seven deacons were chosen to serve as helpers. Philip was one of these men. After the deacon Steven was killed and a persecution of the Christians began in Jerusalem, Philip left Jerusalem for Samaria. There he spread the good news of the Gospel. Philip is also the man who preached to the Ethiopian eunuch and then baptized him.
Since today is the feast day of a deacon, I would like to take a moment to say that deacons also wear stoles. A deacon, however, wears his stole over his shoulder–generally it sits on the left shoulder and falls down to cross below his right armpit. This is worn over his alb. A pastor or priest wears the stole around his neck and it falls down over his stomach; it is left to hang uncrossed.
Although the patterns for stoles are not yet available in Ecclesiastical Sewing, check the store for them in the upcoming weeks. Carrie is working on having finished stoles and patterns, which should all be available soon. In the meantime, consider fabrics for stoles. The best fabrics for making a deacon or pastoral stole are ones that can withstand the rigors of embroidery stitches. Ones that come to mind are York Brocade, Winchester Brocade, Fairford Brocade, and Ely Crown.
Any rich, elegant, yet sturdy fabric will do the job quite nicely as long as they have a durable weave. By necessity, these true liturgical fabrics are not designed to be “flimsy” fabrics. Having a higher thread count and being densely woven has the added advantage of weight which helps stoles to hang straight and stay in place. Good luck on your endeavors if you are creating of a deacon stole.
This evening, as you get ready for bed, think and contemplate about one of the first deacons of the church, perhaps even go read through Acts chapter 6, 8, and even 21. Also thank you for reading this short post and have a good evening.
~Nihil Sine Deo~
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